The Russian Orthodox Church Moscow Patriarchate plays an essential role in the process of self-identification of the Russian people.
Germany is ever more engaged politically in the Middle East and wants to be viewed as a neutral mediator between the competing actors in the region.
The economic crisis in Russia is affecting the uncompetitive post-Soviet economies which are dependent on Moscow.
The Chinese government perceives Russia's military intervention in Syria as an element of the global fight against terrorism.
The early elections are being held in a difficult socio-economic situation. They are part of an process of adjusting the state’s direction.
An attempt to rebuild Kadyrov’s position, which has been tarnished in recent months in connection with the investigation into the murder of Boris Nemtsov.
The Kremlin has chosen neither to restrict political contacts, nor to reduce security cooperation, nor to take openly retaliatory steps.
The new government may be unstable, given the different priorities each coalition partner has and the ambitions of the leaders.
The dramatically deteriorating economic situation in Azerbaijan has caused a wave of spontaneous protests which have been ongoing since 12 January.
We may assume that the uptick in the dynamics of the talks is due to new Russian proposals, hitherto undiscussed in public.